The Sensory and Slow Expression of Worship (Leviticus)

ram

Not too long ago, I read through the book of Leviticus. We don’t usually run to Leviticus as a place for spiritual nourishment. I suppose we could summarize it as a book of sacrifice and strange laws. At least they’re strange laws for us today.

We may recall the Day of Atonement, which is told of in ch.16. Yet there is still so much about linen undergarments, bulls, goats, blood and bathing in that chapter alone that we may still find it difficult to connect with.

Leviticus is demanding. It demands our full attention to the details to understand what’s going on. And it’s those demanding details flowing out of an ancient culture that seem to bog us down. Continue reading

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Fresh Perspective on the Book of Revelation

Vision-of-St-John-the-Evangelist

I’ve been thinking quite a bit about the book Revelation the last couple of weeks. I’m not sure why, initially. I think it followed my Immanuel sermon a few weeks back. I continued to think about the presence of God being with us (Immanuel = God with us). So my mind went to Revelation. God with us in Christ, as seen through the pages of Revelation.

I’ve continued to think a bit more about John’s apocalypse as I’ve been preparing some material for a New Testament course I will teach. Continue reading

We Saw His Star

magi star

Today we welcome Advent. Today we welcome the church’s new year. It truly is a festive time to both contemplate and celebrate, reflect and rejoice.

Advent is centered in remembering the arrival of the Christ child, the Messiah, God’s unique son. While many will start in Matthew 1 as a way to introduce the Advent story, I am going to jump over into Matthew 2. It’s there we find the story of the magi and particularly their encounter with a unique element: a star.

Upon their arrival into Jerusalem, they ask a question: Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him” (vs2). Continue reading